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Want free press? Here's how to actually get it.

Sales Guide #0002 - Free Press

Hey all - since the first post was so well-received (1200 views!), I wanted to share another free report to help out

How To Get Press Coverage

Every week I write actionable guides on how bootstrappers can hustle and create more business for their project by sharing insights from my work as a sales rep for a six figure SaaS.


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I've been asked how to get press coverage for a project. This week, I'll share how you can use cold email to get your project in major media outlets for free.

The best part - when it works, you'll have a shortcut to get press for your next launch.

1x Tip


Most people can't get press.

The standard approach is to email every "tip" handle at news outlets. Using email addresses like tips@forbes.com and tips@cnn.com to share your story makes you contend with the thousands of other emails in those inboxes. It's like throwing your product into a virtual dumpster.

Instead, we're going to find journalists who would write about our stories and email them directly.

One targeted email can result in more success than 1,000 non-targeted emails to every singe journalist out there! Pieter Levels, NomadList

Let's start with your business.

  • Do you make a premium newsletter?

  • Are you launching a crowdfunding campaign?

  • Are you a small business surviving against the odds during COVID?

Good, we'll mix that with some Google-fu to see who's already written about your type of story, using a few tools in the next section.

1x Tool


Press Outlets


While tools like Submit.co and PressHunt.co can compile journalist info, it's still worth looking within certain news outlets to see who's writing stories in your vein. This will help us in the next step. If you run into trouble, a good rule of thumb is: who's written about your competitors?

Good outlets to start with - link

Googling with search operators


We want to run a search on these news outlets and see if they've written about businesses like us before. Google search operators can help us sift through the noise. Ahrefs has a great compilation of all of these operators.

Adding "site:" ****lets us narrow down to just one website. So if we want to find if Mashable's written about premium newsletters, we can google "site:mashable.com premium newsletter," and...

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Voila! I see two articles right away. But they're not all that recent. That means I'd have less of a chance capitalizing on a recent trend for this journalist. Let's add something to our search to make it more recent.

We'll try something similar, but with date attached: "intitle:2020 site:buzzfeed.com premium newsletter," and...

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Now I can go into that article and see the author at the very top. Without using a tool like RocketReach, my best guess for their email is firstname@website.com or first.last@website.com.

I want to send her a short and sweet note. It can now be personal because I know her writing style.

Author,
You were right about the 20 subscriptions that'll make 2020 better. I don't know how I would've survived without insert product!
I made a subscription newsletter (newsletter.com) to make your 2021 better. Let me know if you'd like more info about it 🙂
Ryan

It's personalized to them, fast, and concise. Now, if they like it, they'll always ask to know more. That's when you can share more info, some images, and make it easy for them to write about you. If you make their job simple, you'll go a long way. And when they write about you once, they're that much more likely to do it again?

How do I know this? I've had my experiences with it too 👇

1x Teardown


I was a college kid drumming up business for my first ecommerce site. It promised food from Rochester, NY (a land of fine cuisine), shipped anywhere in the world.

Thing is, I was at school 3,000 miles away in California. I wanted to see if anyone wanted to buy this before I committed to sourcing product across the country. So I started emailing journalists that I saw were writing about local businesses. And it was terrible:

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How many responses did this tactic get?

Zero.

❌ I called her "Ms," way too formal

❌ I threw in all my pleasantries of "great to meet you" when I should have just got to the point.

❌ Way to big of a block of text. It needs to be something they can scan in 4 - 5 seconds.

So I got smart:

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✅ I called out an article that I had a personal connection to

✅ I made my business relevant to his

✅ I was friendly, familiar, and concise

This led to my first article in a small publication. But do you know where the big publications look when they want a new scoop? All of the sudden these started to roll in:

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A TV interview request? An inquiry from Gannett, the company behind USA Today?

All of the sudden, I had free press! From a simple cold email. The business benefitted too - I had 30 orders that week, which meant I should figure out how to buy inventory.

Not only that, but any time I had updates to the business or new projects, I had a contact at several different press outlets who were familiar with my work and were more receptive to writing about me.

Closing


In closing, I hope this has shown a more repeatable and successful approach to earning free press. The easy and suggested route has virtually no benefit. The upside to treating it like a sales process is nearly unlimited. Whether you're just launching for the first time or the tenth time, you have a unique angle that someone wants to talk about. Hope this helps you find them!

💰 Want more?

If you liked this post, and are an entrepreneur who is serious about finding your first customer or your hundredth, I'd love for you to be a part of my premium newsletter. Every week, I release a newsletter just like this one, available exclusively to those subscribers. check me out at https://salesadvice.io/, looking forward to hearing from you!

I'll also eventually be doing a free version of this newsletter!

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  1. 2

    Thank you so much for sharing from your exclusives 🙏

    1. 1

      sure thing dinakar! hope you liked it. I launched the free newsletter at https://salesadvice.io/

  2. 2

    Nice stuff!

    Do you also offer outreach as a service, Ryan? :)

    1. 1

      Maybe someday Yannick! I did just offer the newsletter for these writeups at https://salesadvice.io/, though

  3. 2

    I was just reaching out to reporters this week. Will definitely use the Google search features.

    Thank you!

    1. 1

      good luck and let me know how it goes! I just set up the newsletter at https://salesadvice.io/ and will be sharing more

  4. 2

    Very insightful, thank you for sharing your findings.

    1. 2

      glad you liked it wez! I'm sharing more at salesadvice.io too

      1. 1

        I've just tried to subscribe but I was receiving an error so I've sent you an email with some details.

  5. 2

    Great post, beyond useful, thanks.

    I am one of those people who suffer from newsletter subscription fatigue, I think a blog with the same content will also do well. I struggle to take seriously any offer using a free email account like gmail or yahoo; you should really use your own domain name.

    Thanks again gor the great content.

    1. 2

      glad you liked it!

      here's the domain, moved away from the email address :) salesadvice.io

  6. 1

    thanks, will use it!

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